This page provides some additional information on finding out more about university student volunteering. It includes information about other resources, and about keeping up to date with the legal frameworks which apply.
Most Universities which are involved in student volunteering have web sites with information about volunteering opportunities, how to get started, insurances and other necessary documentation. You will need to search for the term volunteering on your university website, but you might also find that out about volunteering if you search for service learning or community participation.
There is usually a contact centre where some of the more detailed questions can be answered, and your careers centre on campus will be able to direct you there. Our evidence is that it is not only these centres which organise volunteering and often asking other students is a good place to start.
Universities which participated in this project have volunteering information here:
State and Territory Volunteer Centres also provide avenues for finding volunteering opportunities and can also provide support and information about volunteering
Our partners Volunteering Western Australia http://volunteeringwa.org.au/ and Volunteering Australia have websites to visit http://www.volunteeringaustralia.org/
You should also visit https://govolunteer.com.au/ because finding out about volunteering opportunities can be as easy as putting in your postcode.
All the Australian States and Territories have peak bodies:
Volunteering SA-NT - South Australia and Northern Territory http://www.volunteeringsa.org.au/
Volunteering Victoria http://volunteeringvictoria.org.au/
Centre for Volunteering (New South Wales) http://www.volunteering.com.au/
Volunteering Queensland http://volunteeringqld.org.au/web/
Volunteering Tasmania http://www.volunteeringtas.org.au/
Volunteering ACT Australian Capital Territory http://www.volunteeringact.org.au/
Volunteering Australia’s new definition of volunteering can be found here:
The new Volunteering Australia N National Standards for Volunteer Involving Organisations
Volunteering Australia have also recently released materials associated with volunteering in schools:
Student volunteering is often aligned with Work Integrated Learning, and while these are not the same there are some synergies. The Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching has some Work-Integrated Learning reports:
Some of the organisations mentioned in our Guides:
ACEN - Australian Collaborative Education Network - http://acen.edu.au/
Engagement Australia - http://www.engagementaustralia.org.au/home.html
AIME - https://aimementoring.com/
Enactus - http://enactusaustralia.org.au/
Oaktree - http://www.oaktree.org/
It is not appropriate to provide legal advice, but all student volunteers who volunteer with organisations, including their university, will have regulatory and enabling provisions to guide and address their relationships with their agencies and work performed. Some of the useful links are provided here.
The FairWork Ombudsman web page has much useful information for people engaging in unpaid work of different types. http://www.fairwork.gov.au/pay/unpaid-work
See also, Stewart, A, & Owens, R. (2013). The nature, prevalence and regulation of unpaid work experience, internships and trial periods in Australia: Experience or Exploitation. Report for the Fair Work Ombudsman. Available at http://www.fairwork.gov.au/pay/unpaid-work/work-experience-and-internships
Safe Work Australia relates to Work Health and Safety and is an agreement between the Commonwealth, ACT, NSW, Queensland, Tasmania and NT.
Other states have their own provisions.
All states have legislation which relates to volunteers. For example in Western Australia the Department for Local Government and Communities has a web page providing some useful information. http://www.communities.wa.gov.au/communities-in-focus/volunteers/Pages/Policies-and-legislation.aspx
NSW information can be found at: http://www.workcover.nsw.gov.au/law-and-policy/volunteering/volunteers-and-volunteer-organisations
Your state will have something similar.
Legislation and regulatory provisions change constantly. Your State Volunteering Organisation is the best source of up to date information.